I love the title of this book, Mapping the Edge - it suggests travel, boundaries, being on the edge, taking the next step, learning something new about yourself - your life, your loves, your needs, your desires. The title could fit so many different stories and I was anxious to know the one told in this book. And isn't the cover lovely?
I found myself more than a little confused for the first half of the book. At one point (around page 60) I was thinking of setting it aside but I'm glad I kept reading. I love a book that pushes the boundaries of a traditionally written, linear novel.
Mapping the Edge covers a period of only a few days but it switches narrators. One of the 3 story lines is told by the disappearing woman's best friend so it has a personal, thoughtful perspective. The other 2 story lines are told from the 3rd person point of view and provide the reader with an ever expanding view of 2 possible scenarios as to why Anna didn't show up at home when she was expected.
I love a book that shouts at me to pick it up and to keep reading. The questions whirring around and needing to be answered kept me reading. Each of the possible disappearance scenarios served up a couple of interesting twists that added increased interest. I'd like to say that the ending answered all my questions, but it didn't. I closed the book thinking that everything had been resolved completely, but after a day I think the ending was as it should be.
I loved this book but I won't be suggesting it for my f2f book club. I can just see the looks, the same ones I got at the discussion for The History of Love. One lady said I had a weird taste in books and wasn't I the one who also recommended The Poisonwood Bible? Add this one to the list and I'd probably get booted out. That doesn't mean I'm not recommending it to my blog readers. Just remember that you may need to push yourself beyond the first 60-80 pages. After that I think you'll get pulled in and swept along with the story.
One passage out of several that I book darted:
I've become more aware of time passing recently. Not the day-to-dayness of it, but the bigger, structural stuff. Sometimes I have a sense of great chunks of my life floating, like space debris, in slow motion around me: three- or four-year bits that have got detached from the space station and can't be recovered. There goes twenty-two to twenty-six, passing so close I can almost touch it. Then a little further off I see my late twenties/early thrities turning over and over in zero gravity. Maybe I should reel it in and work a little revisionism on it. But then I think, Why bother? It's done already, over, all the possibilities hardened into choices, of no interest now except as history.